Bacon Fat Molasses Cookies

"Bacon Fat Molasses Cookies. I subbed half of the recipe's butter for chilled, rendered bacon fat. The fat adds a robust, smoky undertone that can hold its own with the fragrant spices. I cooked a 1/2 lb of bacon to yield enough fat for the recipe."
-- @chezlarae


1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon pepper (or a little more if you like your cookies with a bigger punch)

1/4 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

6 tablespoons chilled, rendered bacon fat

1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 large egg yolk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup light or dark molasses



Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place 1/2 cup granulated sugar on a plate or shallow baking dish.

Whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, allspice, pepper, and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.

Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat butter, bacon fat, brown sugar, and remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium low and add egg yolk and vanilla, beat until incorporated. On medium-low speed add molasses and beat until combined, about 20 seconds scraping down bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture; beat until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Give the dough a final stir to ensure that no flour pockets remain. Dough will be soft.

Working with 1 tablespoon of dough at a time, roll into balls. Roll half of dough balls in sugar and toss to coat. Place the dough balls 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.

Bake 1 sheet at a time until cookies are browned, still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will look raw in between cracks and seem underdone), about 11 minutes. Do not overbake.
Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature.